Recently, Christine and I took a much needed vacation to the town in which we got married – Eureka Springs. This small town is filled with independently owned shops, boutiques, diversity, and most importantly, outstanding cuisine. My reflex as soon as we get to Eureka Springs is to run to a little hut of a funnel cake stand. I am instantly reminded of the Tulsa Fair and how great deep fried batter is. After settling down and doing a bit of shopping, Christine and I discuss where to go for dinner. We decided upon the magnificent Rogue’s Manor.
Rogue’s Manor wine menu is longer than the Canterbury Tales and the food makes you feel like a king. Christine and I ventured to the wild side of appetizers and chose the Potted Montrachet ($7) This dainty looking plate packed a creamy goat cheese spread incorporating sundried tomatoes, artichoke hearts, Kalamata olives, and herbs – served with toast points.
Along came a Rack of Lamb ($44) which was worth every penny. I was not let down as this plate delivered layers of flavor with its housemade Merlot sauce and the lamb was cooked perfectly medium. The side of horseradish mashed potatoes were creamy and tangy.
Christine was in a seafood kind of mood and dove right into the Seafood Casserole ($29) The casserole contains a hearty amount of salmon, scallops, and shrimp sauteed with white wine, sherry, and herbs. It comes topped with Hollandaise and Swiss cheese. If I wasn’t so busy devouring my own entree, I would have stole hers.
The next night we were in for quite a treat as we got to experience the best in family Italian dining – Ermilio’s. This little home-cooking eatery is a treasure to all who go there and you can tell by the line out the door. After we were seated we were served my wife’s favorite complimentary starter – bread with roasted garlic. Our choice for an appetizer were the Mussells. Drenched in garlic, diced tomatoes, and olive oil we enjoyed each and every one.
After hearing the waiter describe the specials, I knew I had to have the Halibut with Risotto. FAX ME SOME HALIBUT! (I berated my wife with this Seinfeld reference all night) The halibut was seared perfectly and cut like butter with a fork. The risotto tasted like a mixture of creamy rice with bruschetta spread and it paired well with the fish.
Christine had the Shrimp Provencale which was served on top of a linguini. The large shrimp were as described and the olive oil, garlic, shallots, white wine, fresh tomato, cream, and parmesan cheese rounded out this tasty sauce.
We were both filled to the gills (get it, we ate a lot of seafood!) and decided to hold off on dessert. But then we remembered the homemade Tiramisu and we knew we had to take some to go. We enjoyed it later as we had fond memories of our favorite Eureka restaurant, Ermilio’s.
Amid our visits to these two great dining establishments we visited many independent eateries which were charming and simple. From Fried Pickles at the New Delhi Cafe to Loaded Potato Wedges at the Balcony Cafe located in the Basin Park Hotel – our meals were splendid and as diverse as the town itself. We enjoyed the delicious cheesecake (caramel apples on mine, Christine’s had blackberries) at Peace Love & Cheesecake and took quite a bounty of sweets home from Two Dumb Dames Fudge Factory for family and friends.
The main thing I remember is that first bite into my funnel cake at the beginning of the trip and thinking how great it was that we were in Eureka Springs. So, if you’re looking for a weekend getaway Eureka Springs is a quick drive and will promise to be full of tasty adventures!